A middle school principal in the Burnsville-Egan-Savage school district has been charged with trying to hire a 15-year-old prostitute, who was actually an undercover police officer working in a sex trafficking and prostitution sting operation. Was being
Mohamed Ali Selim, 38, of Lakeville, was charged Thursday in Hennepin County District Court with felony prostitution with someone between the ages of 13 and 16. Salim was arrested on Tuesday and remains in jail, awaiting his first court appearance on Friday.
According to the school district, Selim Savage has been principal at Eagle Ridge Middle School in Burnsville since July after two years as principal at William Byrne Elementary in Burnsville.
According to officials, Selim allegedly responded to an advertisement for prostitution and got into a text conversation with a 15-year-old girl. Advertisements were placed on websites by officials who were involved in the details of sex trafficking and prostitution.
According to St. Louis Park Police, Selim is among four people who were arrested on Tuesday and held in the county jail on suspicion of felony charges. Police said in a statement that while three others were released from prison while prosecutors were considering charges, Selim was held pending formal charges “due to his position of authority working with children”. .
‘So, you’re 15?’
According to the criminal complaint, Salim replied to an advertisement on Tuesday by sending a message to the number advertised. He then gets engaged to an undercover police officer posing as a 15-year-old girl.
The complaint said the undercover officer provided rates to Selim, who replied that he could “head for an hour now” or for half an hour. Then he called the undercover officer, who did not respond and called him back.
According to the complaint, in a recorded phone conversation, the undercover officer told Selim she was 15 and said, “If you’re okay with that then it’s not a problem for me.” “The defendant laughed and said, “Okay, that’s fine” and then asked “So, you’re 15 years old?”
Selim said she was very young, but then asked the officer where she was, according to the complaint. When he called St. Louis Park, Selim asked if he was affiliated with the police.
However noting that her age bothered her, Selim said according to the complaint that he could meet her to “spend some time together”. The conversation shifted to text messages, in which Selim told the undercover officer, “Tell me if I can meet you now. Please send the address,” the complaint says.
According to the complaint, the undercover officer gave Selim an address and once there he called her, then texted when he did not respond. He told Selim the place from where to pick him up and when he reached there he was arrested.
“The defendant was distraught and remarked that his life/career was over,” the complaint read.
Officers searched Selim and found $208 in cash. According to prosecutors, they also confiscated his cell phone, which contained records of text messages and phone calls.
The sting operation was carried out by the St. Louis Park, Bloomington, Eden Prairie and Edina police departments, along with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Appearance Human Trafficking Investigators Task Force, the Southwest Hennepin Drug Task Force and the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office.
school district answers
In a Thursday statement, the Burnsville-Egan-Savage school district called the allegations against Selim “disturbing” and said the district’s “immediate and primary concern is the well-being of our students.”
The school district said counselors and support will be available for students and staff who may need someone to talk to.
The school district said it could not comment on the private personnel’s information, but added that “Selim will not be at work at this time” and that Associate Principal Bill Hem is serving as acting principal.
“This is a difficult day for the school and the district,” Superintendent Theresa Battle said in the statement. “It will be difficult for all of us to process. At the same time, we will continue our commitment to providing a high quality education and experience for students as we end the school year.”
According to his LinkedIn profile, Selim previously worked as a sixth grade teacher and dean of students at Global Academy, then a charter school in Columbia Heights, and as math coordinator for the Harvest network of charter schools in North Minneapolis. worked in
On Thursday night, three Savage and Burnsville area state legislators weighed in on the arrests in a joint statement, calling it a “collective blow to our community.”
“The safety of our children in schools is of utmost concern, and this betrayal of community trust is heartbreaking,” read the statement from Sen. Lindsay Port (DFL-Burnsville), Rep. Jessica Hanson, DFL-Burnsville, and Rep. Cala Berg, DFL-Burnsville.
It is “unacceptable” that Minnesota has the third-highest rate of child sexual abuse, the statement continued, and Selim’s arrest “should serve as a clear reminder that we must do more to address and prevent these crimes.” Needed.”